Saturday, May 11, 2013

More Pictures from the NGS 2013 Conference

Here are a few more pictures from the Exhibit Hall at the NGS 2013 Conference:

1)  D. Joshua Taylor of FindMyPast/brightsolid and FGS President:

2)  Ron Arons and his very creative "Got Black Sheep" exhibit:

3)  Lisa Louise Cooke did several mini-presentations in her exhibit space:

4)  There was a Youth Camp today - here's the MyHeritage exhibit with several kids searching the trees:

5)  Ceil Wendt Jensen and Hal at the Polonia American Research Institute exhibit.  I had fun talking to them.

6)  There's Bill Dollarhide at the Family Roots Publishing exhibit right across from the Blogging pen.  Look at all of Leland Meitzler's books!

7)  There was an NGS sponsored contest submitting pictures to Twitter that followed a theme, and there were two winners - Holly Sammons (@Holliswardo on Twitter) and Denise Levenick (@familycurator on Twitter.  Confrats!  They both won a 2014 NGS registration at Richmond, Virginia.  Here's Denise with the secret judge, Gena Philibert-Ortega:

I have a few more so I may post them tonight or tomorrow.

The Exhibit Hall is shutting down in 30 minutes, so I need to get out of the Blogger pen and say my goodbyes.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - This Week's Genealogy Highlight

Calling all Genea-Musings Fans: 

 It's Saturday Night again - 
time for some more Genealogy Fun!!

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!):

1) What genealogy fun have you had this week?  What is your genealogy highlight of the week?  It could be attending the NGS conference, it could be finding a new ancestor, or it could be reading a new genealogy book, or anything else that you have enjoyed.

2)  Tell us about it in a blog post on your own blog, in a comment to this post, or in a Google Plus or Facebook post.

Here's mine:

I've been at the NGS Conference since Tuesday, and have written about my experiences in:

Day 0 at the NGS 2013 Conference (7 May 2013)
Day One at the NGS 2013 Conference -- Morning Report (8 May 2013)
*  Day One at the NGS 2013 Conference -- Afternoon Report (8 May 2013)
*  Photos From NGS Day One - Mariachis and Elvis! (8 May 2013)
*  Day Two at the NGS 2013 Conference (9 May 2013)
*  Exhibit Hall Pictures from the NGS 2013 Conference (10 May 2013)

*  Day 3 at the NGS 2013 Conference (10 May 2013)
*  more to come!

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

MyHeritage To Announce Record Detective Feature

MyHeritage keeps adding new features to help genealogy and family history researchers build their online family tree, and also find records and contacts for persons in their tree.

I attended a meeting this morning at the NGS Conference with other geneabloggers where MyHeritage described their Record Detective feature.  It is described as a breakthrough technology that will save researchers time by finding records in the MyHeritage family trees and record collections without an intentional search.

(two Record Detectives, Ori Soen and Daniel Horowitz of MyHeritage)

Users have to have a family tree on MyHeritage (which requires a subscription for a larger tree) and a Data subscription to see the records.

Some highlights of the Record Detective feature:

*  It's smart, reliable and unlike anything else.  A 97% success rate was quoted.

*  For every record you find (with a search, or from a Record Match for a person in your tree), it will identify other records for the person, and other persons (e.g., parents, siblings, spouse, children) linked to the first person.

*  It will find this new information by searching billions of records, in seconds.

*  It gives you links to the related records and MyHeritage or Geni family trees.

*  It is extremely accurate, so you can trust the information and sources.

MyHeritage will have much more information on Monday in their press release.

They showed another new feature - called Record Extraction.  From the list of Record Matches found for persons in your tree, you can select Facts to add to your MyHeritage tree from the records.  When you Confirm the record match (denoting that it applies to the specific person in your tree), you are given the option to add the facts.  For those who have already Confirmed a Record Match (I've done about 2,000 of them already), they can go to the list of Confirmed matches and add the Facts one person at a time to persons in their MyHeritage tree.

I asked about the delay time for a new subscriber who recently added their tree and is waiting for the Record Matches to appear.  They said that because of the addition of the 1790 to 1930 U.S. census records that the servers are working fulltime, and there is a one to two week backlog for Record Matches to appear.

When I get home and have access to my MyHeritage family tree I will take a look at it.  The Record Matching and Record Detective features are dependent upon the MyHeritage Data collection (which is essentially the same as the WorldVitalRecords collection).

Here is a picture of me with the Record Detectives.  They gave us all fake mustaches to wear...funny that the detectives aren't wearing mustaches!

(The two Record Detectives, myself and Daniel Horowitz)

The URL for this post is:
Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Disclosure:  I have a complimentary PremiumPlus MyHeritage subscription and a complimentary Data subscription from MyHeritage, which I appreciate.  This does not affect my objectivity in writing about MyHeritage and its companion sites.

Surname Saturday - WOOLLEY (England > colonial Massachusetts)

It's Surname Saturday, and I'm "counting down" my Ancestral Name List each week.  

I am in the 7th great-grandmothers, up to number 587: Sarah WOOLLEY (1650-????). [Note: the earlier great-grandmothers and 7th great-grandfathers have been covered in earlier posts].

My ancestral line back through two American generations of this WOOLLEY family line is:

1.  Randall J. Seaver

2. Frederick Walton Seaver (1911-1983)
3. Betty Virginia Carringer (1919-2002)

4. Frederick Walton Seaver (1876-1942)
5. Alma Bessie Richmond (1882-1962)

8. Frank Walton Seaver (1852-1922)
9. Hattie Louise Hildreth (1857-1920)

18.  Edward Hildreth (1831-1899)
19.  Sophia Newton (1834-1923)

36.  Zachariah Hildreth (1783-1857)
37.  Hannah Sawtell (1789-1857)

72.  Zachariah Hildreth (1754-1828)
73.  Elizabeth Keyes (1758-1793)

146.  Jonathan Keyes (1722-1781)
147.  Elizabeth Fletcher (1720-1761)

292.  Joseph Keyes (1698-1720)

293.  Elizabeth Fletcher (1698-1775)

586.  Joshua Fletcher, born 10 March 1643/44 in Concord, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States; died 21 November 1713 in Chelmsford, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  He was the son of 1172. William Fletcher and 1173. Rachel.  He married 18 July 1682 in Chelmsford, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.
587.  Sarah Woolley, born about 08 May 1650 in Concord, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States; died in  ????. 

Children of Joshua Fletcher and Sarah Woolley are:
*  Rachel Fletcher (1683-1743), married Peter Buss (1680-????)
*  Timothy Fletcher (1685-1705)
*  John Fletcher (1687-1760), married Hannah Phelps (1685-1737).
*  Joseph Fletcher (1689-1772), married Sarah Adams (1691-1761).
*  Sarah Fletcher (1691-1737), married Thomas Reed (1687-1773).
*  Jonathan Fletcher (1693-????), married Jane Chamberlin (1698-????)
*  Jonas Fletcher (1694-1777), married Elizabeth Robbins (1700-1782)
*  Elizabeth Fletcher (1698-1775), married Joseph Keyes (1698-1720)

1174.  Christopher Woolley, born about 1617 in England; died 28 January 1700/01 in Concord, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.  He married 26 February 1646/47 in Concord, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.
1175.  Ursula Wodell, born 1628 in Cranfield, Bedfordshire, England; died 13 June 1674 in Concord, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States.

Children of Christopher Woolley and Ursula Wodell are:

*  Rebecca Woolley (1647-1675)
*  Hannah Woolley (1649-1649)
*  Sarah Woolley (1650-????), married Joshua Fletcher (1644-1713)
*  Mary Woolley (1652-1677), married Samewell How (????-????)
*  Eunice Woolley (1656-1737), married John Taylor (1653-1719).
*  Ruth Woolley (1658-????), married (1) Joseph Taylor (????-1709); (2) Stephen Meads (????-1718); (3) Daniel Cheever (????-1733).
*  John Woolley (1660-1718), married Elizabeth Baker (1684-1757).
*  Samuel Woolley (1662-1723).
*  Joseph Woolley (1664-1745), married Rachel Brackett (????-????).
*  Thomas Woolley (1666-1710), married Rebecca French (1674-1737).

Information about this Woolley family was obtained from:

*  Irene Cynthia Gould, "Christopher Woolley of Concord, Mass., and Some of His Descendants," New England Historical and Genealogical Register (Boston, Mass. : New England Historic Genealogical Society), Volume 75, Number 1 (January 1921), pages 29-40.

*  Massachusetts Town Vital Record Books

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Friday, May 10, 2013

Day 3 at the NGS 2013 Conference

If it's Friday, then it's almost over!  One more day of walking (lots of walking), blogging, kibitzing, visiting and sitting, plus the classes, of course.  Here was my day 3:

Unfortunately, last night I closed the cover on the fully charged tablet that I take notes in Evernote with, rather than actually turning it off.  When I turned it on the battery was at 0%.  Dumb, a lesson learned.  Oh well - back to pen and paper for awhile!

1)  After breakfast at the Paradise Cafe with Linda, I attended Bill Ruddock presentation on "Colonial New York Genealogy."  He systematically covered vital records, Bible records, cemetery records, church records, town records, military records, biographies, compiled sources, public records, tax lists and poll lists, court records, orphan masters, probate records, land and manor records.  Due to a fire in 1911 in Albany, some of the record sets are incomplete.  On the other hand, many record sets have been indexed and published, and many are available on  FHL microfilm.  Some are available online on the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society (NYGBS) website.

I gained more knowledge about record availability in this talk, and gleaned some ideas for research on several of my brick wall ancestors:

*  There are New York Muster Rolls, 1755-1764 in book form - Bill said some entries give an age and a birthplace.  Perhaps there is information about my John Kemp/Camp, who I think as an English soldier in New York,  in those records.

*  There is a book with transcribed tax and poll lists for Dutchess County, 1718-1787.  Perhaps these records will have information about the Knapp families in the County.  My William Knapp was born there in 1775.  The tax and poll lists are also available on FHL microfilm.

2)  I couldn't stay away from the 9:30 a.m. presentation by Elizabeth Shown Mills titled "Trousers, Black Domestic, Tacks, and Housekeeping Bills: 'Trivial Details' Can Solve Research Problems."  Records are filled with trivial details, and many researchers skip over them.  Elizabeth went through a number of estate inventories, tax lists, wills, loose papers, militia roll, and other records that listed items like those in the title, and many more.  She kept coming back to her basic principles that a Researcher is:

(photograph courtesy of Scott Stewart, NGS photographer)

*  Not only a collector of facts, but also an analyst and an interpreter of those facts.
*  A nitpicker, paying careful attention to details.
*  An innovator who seeks new ways to probe records, apply data, connect facts and see patterns that do and don't match.
*  Spends more time analyzing and evaluating the problem, records and data than the time searching and collecting names and facts.

Elizabeth introduced the Evidence Analysis Process Map in this presentation, but did not discuss the details of it to any extent (she did that on Wednesday in another talk).

3)  I didn't go to a class at 11 a.m., I updated my NGS blog compendium and wrote the exhibit hall pictures post.  Then I ate lunch and wandered the exhibit hall.I did stop by the Ancestry display and asked about when we will see the chromosome segment matches on the AncestryDNA results (Kenny said it's not imminent, but they might do it).  I also asked Crista about the wild card problem I and others have noted, and she brought Katherine Nester over to discuss it.  It was good to meet Katherine, who answered my earlier blog post on the subject.  Then it was to talk to Jill Crandell about her ResearchTies program - an online research log application.  I love the concept, and want to try it out.  I also stopped by the FamilySearch exhibit and had my picture taken coming off the dock.  I'll post it if/when I receive it.  Linda had hers taken too.

4)  For the 2:30 p.m. class, I picked Julie Miller's "Would the Real Molly Brown Please Stand Up?"  This was an interesting case study where Julie described finding living relatives of Margaret (Tobin) Brown (you know, "The Unsinkable Molly Brown") and the ancestral lines of her and her husband, John J. Brown.  It turned out that some of the earlier "research" performed and published about her husband's parents was wrong, and Julie figured it out convincingly.

5)  I then went to hear Harold Henderson speak on "'Are We There Yet?' Proof and the Genealogy Police" in the 4 p.m. class.  Harold noted that "name changes are like a genealogical earthquake!"  His research problem was "Who was Blanche Chilcote's husband? Where did he come from? Where did he end up? How do we know when we've figured it out?"

Harold outlined the census and city directory records for Edward or George Chilcote, born about 1875 in Ohio, and residing in Chicago after his marriage in 1898.  Harold eventually found sufficient records to identify the real name, who his parents were, when and where he died, where is was buried, etc.  All the while, Harold fed us his lessons learned from this case.  He also discussed the genealogical proof standard, and noted that "While there are no genealogy police, it's fairly easy to follow the rules."

6)  So I made four out of the five classes today, raising my "batting average" to 11 out of 15 for the conference.  I'm proud of myself, I've only dozed off twice so far!

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Exhibit Hall Pictures from NGS 2013 Conference

I've taken a few pictures in the NGS 2013 Conference Exhibit Hall so far, and will try to take more in the next day.

Some of the exhibitors:

*  The New York Genealogical and Biographical Society (NYGBS):

 2)  The New England Historical Genealogical Society (NEHGS):

3)  FindMyPast:

4)  MyHeritage (with Daniel Horowitz smiling):

5)  FamilySearch:


7)  The National Genealogical Society (NGS):

The URL for this post is:

Copyirght (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Review: Genealogy at a Glance: Polish Genealogy Research

The Genealogical Publishing Company in Baltimore has published another in its series of "Genealogy at a Glance" laminated research guides - this time for Polish Genealogy Research by Rosemary A. Dembinski Chorzempa. 

This "Genealogy at a Glance" booklet has four laminated pages on one 11" x 17" paper (folded). It is designed to give the user the basic elements of genealogy research in the allotted space. They provide an overview of the facts a researcher needs to know in order to begin and proceed successfully with research in the subject.

The description of the 
Polish Genealogy Research includes:

"Poland is far away and the language is difficult to read, but this Polish research guide will help you overcome these obstacles as quickly and easily as possible. In just four pages, Rosemary Chorzempa, author of the famous textbook Polish Roots, lays out the basic elements of Polish genealogical research, boiling the subject down to its essence and allowing you to grasp the fundamentals of Polish research at a glance. In keeping with the "Genealogy at a Glance" theme, the four specially laminated pages of this work are designed to give you as much useful information in the space allotted as you’ll ever need."

The booklet has these subjects:

*  Contents
*  Quick Facts and Important Dates
*  Polish Names
*  Polish History and Emigration
*  Finding the Hometown
*  Online Databases From Poland
*  Other Resources
*  Areas in Polish Lands

This booklet is designed primarily for the person who is not an expert, or has little experience, on finding Polish ancestors.  It provides guidance and excellent ideas to help researchers to find their Polish ancestors. Reference books, online databases and websites for some of the topics are cited in the text.

For someone like me that teaches and talks about genealogy a bit, it is invaluable because I can pull it out and provide some guidance to my student or colleague interested in the subject.

The beauty of these "Genealogy at a Glance" booklets is that they are very light and portable in a briefcase or laptop case. They are fixtures in my research case.

This four-page laminated booklet costs $8.95,  plus postage and handling (4th Class Mail $4.50; FedEx Ground Service in the USA, $6.00). You can order it through the Genealogical Store, or use the link for the 
Polish Genealogy Research booklet and click on the "Add to Cart" link.  I recommend buying these at seminars and conferences where they are offered in order to avoid the shipping costs.
*  Book Review:  Genealogy at a Glance - Family History Library Research

The URL for this post is:  

Copyright (c) Randall J. Seaver, 2013.

Disclosure: contacted me recently and asked me to provide a review of this booklet. They mailed me a review copy for my personal use as remuneration for this review. 

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Day 2 at the NGS 2013 Conference

Here is what I remember from Day 2 at the NGS 2013 Conference in Las Vegas:

1)  The day started early...after a quick breakfast with Linda, I went to the Thomas W. Jones session at 8 a.m. on "Maximizing Your Use of Evidence."  Tom started this talk by noting that we all have research puzzle pieces that are not linked, and we need to understand how evidence analysis can help us put the pieces together to solve problems.  There were four major parts to this presentation:

(photograph courtesy of Scott Stewart, NGS photographer)

*  Defining and Categorizing Evidence -- he noted that we have been trained to be "fill in the blank" genealogists, and do not do enough research or analysis to understand the evidence we have.  He recommended that we trust no source, and that we may find no direct evidence for some ancestors.
*  Finding Evidence -- we should start with a focused and specific genealogical question - what do you want to know about an ancestor?  A source is a "container" with information, and information provides evidence, which is an answer and not a conclusion.
*  Evaluating Evidence -- sources created soon after the events reported have the greatest credibility.  He said that court records (land, probate, legal, tax, etc.) have the greatest credibility.
*  Using Evidence -- base conclusions on all of the evidence with all conflicts resolved, and explain the conclusions in writing.

Tom used several research cases from his experience to illustrate his points, and provided a two page list of NGSQ and other publications with source material on the use of genealogical evidence, and case studies that demonstrate the skillful use of evidence.

2)  After this talk, I went to the Blogger/Press area and set up my laptop.  I skipped the 9:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. sessions in order to post my NGS blog compendium, chat with my blogging colleagues, and visit many of the exhibitors.  I had excellent conversations with Amy Crow at the exhibit, with Katie and Chris Chapman at the Geungle exhibit,  and the folks at the Boston University exhibit.  At 11 a.m., I joined the group at the Geungle exhibit (big comfy chairs!) to discuss how to get Generation Y interested in genealogy, led by Terri O'Connell and Jen Baldwin.

I left there to go to lunch at the SportsBook Deli - had an Italian hoagie this time.  I went back to the exhibit hall for a while and wandered a bit, then went off to my meeting at 12:30 p.m.  I returned at 1:45 p.m. to ponder going to the 2:30 p.m. session.  I did!

3)  At 2:30 p.m., I attended Elizabeth Shown Mills' presentation on "Information Overload? Effective Project Planning, Research, Data Management, and Analysis."  Elizabeth noted that "time management is a critical analysis tool."  And "we need to maintain the 'body of evidence' in a way that enables us to digest it, analyse it, and correlate it with everything we have found."  This presentation presented a framework for any project, built on sound practices that take us from problem analysis to problem resolution.

(photograph courtesy of Scott Stewart, NGS photographer)

Elizabeth advocates using two different report formats to use for every research problem - a Research Report and a Research Note report for each individual.  The Research Report would include the information obtained in the first three stages of gathering and processing research information - Problem Analysis, Creation of a Work Plan, and Doing the Research.  She recommended using a word processor for these tasks, and provided an outline for the report, and an example report for the Problem Analysis and Work Plan stages.

The Research Note Report is used to do the fourth stage - Data Sorting.  Basically, the researcher should create a chronological list of life events for an individual, including the information obtained (either transcribed or abstracted) for each event, along with any research and analysis comments about the information, and a complete source citation.  She recommended using a word processor for this also, and provided an outline for this report.  She stated that information should be entered into a genealogy software program only after these reports have been written.  Data from the word processor generated reports can be copy/pasted into the software program fields.  Elizabeth noted that, at present, RootsMagic is the only software program that produces a Research Note Report that includes the elements described above.  She finished with "we need to be analytical, it doesn't matter if it's high-tech or low-tech."

4)  After the 2:30 talk, I returned to the Blogger area, and then went off to talk to other exhibitors - Laurie Buzbee at the RootsMagic exhibit, Janet Hovorka at the Family Chart Masters exhibit, and Brian Speckart at the FindMyPast exhibit.

5)  At 4:40 p.m., I left the Exhibit Hall and went back to our room, and Linda and I went to dinner at the oh-so-ritzy, but smoke-free, SportsBook Deli (since the Paradise Cafe is open for dinner on only Friday and Saturday nights now.  I had a cheeseburger and some of Linda's salad and carrots. Then we went to the Elvis impersonator show - "The King," starring Trent Carlini in the Shimmer Cabaret.  He was pretty good, but it was only 75 minutes and he did a limited number of songs.  Afterwards, Linda bought the CD and had a picture taken with him.

6)  I note that I've attended seven sessions so far, and missed three.  That may be my best "batting average" for any conference!

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Blog Post Compendium from the NGS 2013 Conference

Here are the blog posts from, or about, the NGS 2013 Conference in Las Vegas, held 8-11 May 2013.

1)  Randy Seaver on the Genea-Musings blog:

* Day 0 at the NGS 2013 Conference (7 May 2013)
* Day One at the NGS 2013 Conference -- Morning Report (8 May 2013)
*  Day One at the NGS 2013 Conference -- Afternoon Report (8 May 2013)
*  Photos From NGS Day One - Mariachis and Elvis! (8 May 2013)
*  Day Two at the NGS 2013 Conference (9 May 2013)
*  Exhibit Hall Pictures from the NGS 2013 Conference (10 May 2013)
*  Day 3 at the NGS 2013 Conference (10 May 2013)
*  MyHeritage to Announce Record Detective Feature (11 May 2013)
*  More Pictures from the NGS 2013 Conference (11 May 2013)
*  Day 4 at the NGS 2013 Conference (That's all, Folks!) (12 May 2013)
*   Blog Post Compendium from the NGS 2013 Conference (this post)

2)  The Ancestry Insider blog:

*  #NGS2013 Conference App for your Laptop (7 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 Insider Room Map (8 May 2013)
*  Debunking Misleading Records by Thomas W. Jones (8 May 2013)
*   No Time is Ever Wasted Doing Research (8 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013: Documenting the Lives of Mormon Women (9 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 Using FamilySearch to Unearth Your Family Roots (9 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 Online Tools for Genealogists (9 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013: Cutting Through the Confusion: Research in Upstate New York (13 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 - Stump the Genealogist (15 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 - FamilySearch Family Tree, An Item or Two (16 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 - Futures for FamilySearch Family Tree (17 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 - Ancestry.con's Mobile App (21 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 - TRON, Mr. Spock, and Willie Wonka (21 May 2013)
*  #NGS2013 - The Future of Family History - According to You! (23 May 2013)

3)  Leland Meitzler on the GenealogyBlog:

*  National Genealogical Society Presents Awards Honoring Excellence in Newsletter Editorship and Service to NGS (8 May 2013)
*  Getting Product Into the NGS Exhibit Hall (8 May 2013)
*  The Media Center for Official Bloggers at the NSA Conference (8 May 2013)
*  Irish Ancestry? Check Out Eneclann (9 May 2013)
*  Thoughts on the National Genealogical Society (9 May 2013)
*  Got Black Sheep?  (10 May 2013)
*  Some FamilySearch Stats (10 May 2013)
*  Shirley Langdon Wilcox Award Goes to Julie Potter Miller, CG (11 May 2013)
*  2013 NGS Awards! (11 May 2013)

4)  Gena Ortega on Gena's Genealogy Blog:

*  Social Media Tools for Genealogy: #NGS2013 Links (8 May 2013)
*  Documetnig the Lives of Mormon Women: #NGS2013 Links (9 May 2013)
*  Earthquake! The Documents Left Behind. #NGS2013 (9 May 2013)

5)  Emily Garber on the (going) The Extra Yad blog:

*  NGS : President's Citation to Jan Meisels Allen (8 May 2013)
*  NGS: Day 1 (8 May 2013)
*  NGS: Day 2 (10 May 2013)
*  NGS: Day 3 (12 May 2013)
*  NGS: Day 4 (12 May 2013)

6)  Paula Hinkel on the Southern California Genealogy Jamboree blog:

*  #NGS2013 Attendees: Elvis Can Be Your Ticket to Jamboree #SCGS2013

7)  Valerie Elkins on the Family Cherished blog:

*  NGS in Las Vegas (8 May 2013)
*  NGS Day 1 (9 May 2013)
*  NGS 2013 Day 2 (10 May 2013)
*  I Won in Vegas (11 May 2013)
*  NGS Wrap-up (13 May 2013)

8)  Judy G. Russell on The Legal Genealogist blog:

*  Law and the NGS Conference (8 May 2013)
*  NGS Report (10 May 2013)

9)  Barbara Mathews and her team on the BCG Springboard: News and Notes blog:

*  BCG Education Fund Workshop: Putting Historical Context and Migration Into Your Family History (8 May 2013)
*  NGS 2013: On-the-Clock Attendees at Putting Skills to Work (8 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: Thomas Jones on "Debunking Misleading Records" (8 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: Ronald Hill on "Interpreting the Symbols and Abbreviations in Seventeenth Century English and american Documents" (8 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: Barbara Vines Little on "Understnading What They Wrote: Tricks and Tips for Deciphering the Unintelligible in Documents" (9 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013:  Pam Eagleson on "Grandma's Treasure Chest: Investigating and Evaluating Family Artifacts (10 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013:  Judy Russell on "Blackguards and Black Sheep: The Lighter Side of the Law" (10 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013:  Elizabeth Shown Mills on "Information Overload? Effective Project Planning, Research, Data Management and Analysis (10 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at BCG 2013: David Ouimette on "Overcoming Spelling Problems and Unlocking the Power of Names"
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013:  Pat Stamm on "Step Outside Your Genealogical Box: Trying Assorted Records to Reach Research Goals" (10 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013:  Dawne Slater-Putt's "Fail! When the Record is Wrong" (11 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: Harold Henderson on "Are We There Yet? Proof and the Genealogy Police" (11 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: David Rencher on "Treasures in the Records of the U.S. Congress" (11 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013:  Elissa Scalise Powell on Baker's Dozen Steps to Writing Research Reports" (11 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: Warren Bittner on "Proof Arguments: How and Why" (11 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: Julie Miller on "Using Emigrant Guides for Genealogical Research" (11 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: Barbara Mathews on "Not Quite Right: Recognizing Errors" (13 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013: Richard Sayre on "Genealogical Applications of Historical Geographical Information Systems" (13 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS 2013:  Pamela Boyer Sayre on "Enough Is Enough:!Or Is It?" (13 May 2013)
*  BCG Ed Fund Leary Distinguished Lecture: Elizabeth Mills on "Can Trousers, Beds, and Other 'Trivial Details' Solve Genealogical Problems?" (14 May 2013)
*  BCG Skillbuilding at NGS: Certification Seminar (14 May 2013)

9)  The In-Depth Genealogist blog:

*  The Arrival by Jen Baldwin (8 May 2013)
*  We Are ... UN Conferencing! by Terri O'Connell (8 May 2013)

10)  Caroline Pointer on the blog:

*  My Plans for the First Day at #NGS2013 (8 May 2013)
*  Thursday at #NGS2013 - My Plan for the Day (9 May 2013)
*  Friday's Plan of Attack for #NGS2013 (10 May 2013)
*  The Final Day at #NGS2013 - Saturday (11 May 2013)
*  Today is an Important Date (11 May 2013)

Caroline also has several short videos on her Google+ page at

11)  Sandra Gardner Benward on the Root Cellar Sacramento Genealogical Society blog:

*  Tuesday - Helping Hands and Support at NGS Conference 2013 (7 May 2013)
*  Those Places Thursday - NGS Conference Day 1 (8 May 2013)
*  Friday's Faces From the Past - NGS Day 2 (9 May 2013)
*  Friday Genealogy Slots in Las Vegas - NGS Day 3 (10 May 2013)
*  Last Day in Las Vegas at NGS Conference (11 May 2013)
*  Who's Who in Vegas at NGS (11 May 2013)

12)  Gayle Ficarra Wolcott on the Genealogy Dragnet blog:

* 2013 NGS Conference - Travel Day (7 May 2013)
*  2013 NGS Conference - Day 2 (9 May 2013)
*  2013 NGS Conference - Day 4 (11 May 2013)

13)  Kathryn Doyle on the California Genealogical Society and Library blog:

*  Off to the NGS 2013 Family History Conference (7 May 2013)

14)  Janet Hovorka on The Chart Chick blog:

*  Come to Our Demos at NGS (9 May 2013)

15)  Patricia Stanard on the My Genealogy Obsession blog:

*  Hangin' With the Fun People -- NGS 2013 -- Day One (9 May 2013)

16)  Harold Henderson on the Midwestern Microhistory blog:

*  NGS Day 1 Wednesday May 8 (9 May 2013)
*  NGS Day 2 Thursday May 9 (10 May 2013)
*  NGS Day 3 Friday May 10 (11 May 2013)

17)  MHD on the GreatGreats blog:

*  NGS UNOfficial Notes -- Day 1 (8 May 2013)
*  NGS UNOfficial Notes -- Day 2 (9 May 2013)
*  NGS UNOfficial Blogger: Day 3 and a hotel comment (10 May 2013)
*  Great Books: NGS Conference Souvenirs (13 May 2013)
*  NGS: UNOfficial Surprise (18 May 2013)

18)  Denise Levenick on The Family Curator blog:

*  GeneaVegas Day One at #NGS2013 (9 May 2013)
*  Lessons of the Day #NGS2013 (10 May 2013)
*  NGS 2013 Vegas Day 3: It's All in the Details (12 May 2013)
*  Day 4 Highlights and Photos from #NGS2013 (13 May 2013)
*  Hitting the Jackpot at #NGS2014 (14 May 2013)

19)  Sara E. Campbell on the on the Remembering Those Who Came Before blog:

*  Notes from NGS (9 May 2013)

20)  Steve Anderson on the FamilySearch Blog.

*  From the Newbie's Perspective (9 May 2013)
*  NGS 2013 -- Feedback on FamilySearch (10 May 2013)

21)  Sandy on The Frugal Genealogist blog:

*  Viva Las Vegas (8 May 2013)
*  Friday at the NGS Conference (10 May 2013)
*  Sitting in the Back Seat (10 May 2013)

22)  Diane L. Richard on the Upfront with NGS blog:

*  Wow! Day One of the NGS Family History Conference was Something (9 May 2013)
*  Day 2 of the NGS Family History Conference - just as Busy and Exciting as Day 1 (10 May 2013)
*  Day 3 Wrap Up ... the Action Continues (11 May 2013)

23)  Kathryn Doyle on the California Genealogical Society and Library blog:

*  First Report from NGS 2013 (10 May 2013)

24)  Ruth Blair on The Passionate Genealogist blog:

*  Day One at the NGS Conference in Las Vegas (10 May 2013)
*  NGS Conference in Las Vegas -- Day Two (10 May 2013)
*  NGS Conference - Day Three (11 May 2013)
*  Press Release: Excellence in Genealogy Scholarship and Service Honored by National Genealogical Society Awards (11 May 2013)
*  Press Release: National Genealogical Society Presents Shirley Langdon Wilcox Award for Exemplary Volunteerism to Julie Potter Miller, CG (11 May 2013)
*  NGS Conference Las Vegas - The Final Day (20 May 2013)

25)  Beirne Konarski on the GenVoyage blog:

*  NGS National Conference (10 May 2013)
*  Last Day of the NGS Conference (11 May 2013)

26)  Biff Barnes on the Stories To Tell Blog:

*  Good Reads: New Sources at the NGS Conference (10 May 2013)

27)  Yvonne Demoskoff on Yvonne's Genealogy Blog:

*  My Impressions of the NGS 2013 Conference (13 May 2013)
*  Scenes From the NGS 2013 Conference (15 May 2013)

28)  Jen Baldwin on the Ancestral Breezes blog;

*  NGS 2013: The Sessions (14 May 2013)

29)  Amy Urman on The Genealogy Search blog:

*  NGS Conference 2013 Las Vegas (14 May 2013)

This list is not finished.  I will add to it during the conference and afterwards as long as the posts are by bloggers who attended the conference.

Last updated:  23 May 2013, 8:30 a.m.

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Treasure Chest Thursday - 1860 United States Census Record for Henry White Family

It's Treasure Chest Thursday - time to look in my digital image files to see what treasures I can find for my family history and genealogy musings.

The treasure today is the 1860 United States Census record for my White 2nd great-grandfather's family in Killingly town, Windham County, Connecticut:

The Henry White household:

The extracted information for the household, in the West Killingly Post Office area, with an enumeration date of 6 July 1860, is:

*  Henry A. White - age 35, male, a manufacturer, $1000 in real property, born Conn.
*  Amy F. White - age 33, female, born Conn. 

*  Ellen F. White - age 15, female, born Conn.
*  Juliette White - age 13, female, born Conn.
*  Emily A. White - age 12, female, born Conn.*  Henry J. White - age 7, male, born Conn., attended school in last year
*  Fred J. White - age 1/12, male, born Conn.

The source citation for this document is:

1860 United States Federal Census, Windham County, Connecticut, 
Population Schedule, Killingly town, page 588, dwelling #851, family #925, Henry White household; digital image, (; citing National Archives Microfilm Publication M653, Roll 92.

There are some probable errors in this enumeration:

*  Juliette White's birth date was 8 September 1848, so she should be age 11.

*  Emily White's birth date was 15 October 1849, so she should be age 10.
*  Emily White's middle name was Elizabeth, so the middle initial is wrong.

The question in my mind about this entry is why weren't the three daughters going to school?  Perhaps there was no school after 6th grade, or they were needed at home.  

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Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Photos from NGS Day 1 -- Mariachis and Elvis!

Here are the first photos I have from the NGS 2013 Conference in Las Vegas:

1)  After the Keynote program this morning, the Mariachis Los Bravos from a local middle school performed.  They went almost two hours out in the area leading to the Exhibit Hall:

2)  The Southern California Genealogical Society (SCGS) has a contest for a free Genealogy Jamboree registration for those who post a picture of themselves with the Elvis Presley cardboard guy wearing an SCGS shirt.  Here's mine!

3)  I will post more photos tomorrow from the Exhibit Hall when I have a better Internet connection.

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Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Day 1 at the NGS 2013 Conference - Afternoon Report

After lunch on Day One at the NGS 2013 Conference, I actually attended two more education sessions (that makes three today - probably my all-time record!  And two more than I attended at three days of RootsTech 2013).  The highlights of the afternoon time:

I wandered around the Exhibit Hall a bit, and read my blogs and email in the Bloggers media area which had Ethernet service.  Leland Meitzler, Valerie Elkins, Emily Garber, Jen Baldwin, Terri O'Connell and The Ancestry Insider were also there off and on.

1)  I attended Elizabeth Shown Mills' 2:30 p.m. presentation of "The Genealogical Proof Standard in Action! Case Building When No Record States an Answer!"  Elizabeth introduced the Genelaogical Proof Standard, including the modified categories in the Sources, Information and Evidence definitions.  She then summarized the ACTION Plan of: Assess what you have; Complete the research; Trust nobody! Integrate and correlate details; Outline a theory - then try to disprove it! and Now, write a convincing argument.  She said that proof and process are two different things.

Elizabeth then demonstrated the concepts and application using many sources in a case study of a typical problem that many researchers experience - post-1850 U.S. census records don't indicate parents for a person.  Her case was for William Medders of Bibb County, Georgia in the 1850 U.S. Census.  There was a family story that his father was Reuben.  There were several other Medders families in the 1850 and 2860 census records in the county, and by finding marriage records, land records, a guardianship records, expanding the search to neighboring counties, and by working with the Family, Associates and Neighbors, she pieced together the Medders family before 1850, including the mother of William Medders and some of her family.  It went awfully fast, but it was impressive.  At the end, she asked the audience if she had satisfied the GPS; the audience agreed that she had.

2)  I had no time to grab a snack and get to the next session at 4 p.m. - I chose to attend F. Warren Bittner's "Impossible Immigrant! I Know Everything About the Man Except Where He Came From."  Warren briefly introduced the GPS to the audience at the beginning of this session, including a plan to perform a reasonably exhaustive search. This was a case study about finding a German immigrant's place of birth, but required finding many American records of the extended family.  It was also a fascinating tour of New York City records.  Warren's ancestor was Fred Bittner, son of Fred and Margaret Bittner, in the 1870 and 1880 census.  The father died before 1880, but he could find no death record, cemetery record, earlier census record, military record, marriage record, passenger list, naturalization record, land record, probate record, church record of a marriage or children's baptisms, or city directory entries.

At this point he was very frustrated with his unreasonable and exhausting search!  Then he found a marriage record a brother of his ancestor's brother, which said the parents were John and Margaret Buettner (other records said Buttner and Bottner).  The marriage records of another brother and two sisters said the father's name was John.  It turned out that there were three brothers named John, all born in Germany.  All three deaths were in the New York City records.  Warren then pieced together the lives of the three Johns, and eventually found a reference to a village in Bayern in Germany.  The best evidence was the burial record of the oldest John in 1865, which listed the parents names and the birth village.  A search in the village church records revealed the births of all three sons named Johan, plus the other children.

Warren said that "Exhaustive search means to look for all records that might be available for all members of the extended family."  One of the neat things about this presentation was the step-by-step unveiling of the record gathering process and Warren's reaction to the body of available evidence at each step along the way.  Warren noted that many immigrants gave their birthplace in records as the nearest large city, or just a district or state rather than a small village.

3)  It was 5 p.m., so I went back to the Blogger media center and packed up my laptop, and took one more tour of the Exhibit Hall.  I got my picture taken at the SCGS booth and visited at the MyHeritage exhibit with Amanda and Mark.

At 5:30 p.m., I went to my room, and Linda and I enjoyed dinner at TJ's Steakhouse in the Las Vegas Hotel - a bit pricey but it was excellent food (and the hotel gave us a $25 off coupon!).    Then it was blogging time in the room.

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Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver

Day One at the NGS 2013 Conference - Morning Report

The 2013 NGS Conference started today with an excellent Keynote talk, some mariachi music, the open Exhibit Hall, and the first day of sessions.

Jordan JonesNGS President, opened the Conference by welcoming the attendees, and summarizing the benefits of being an NGS member.  He introdsuced Julie Miller, who named the winners of the Newsletter Awards, and the Presidential citation.  Amy Crow gave a short summary of
The Keynore speaker at 8 a.m. was Marina L. Smith on "People, Policy and Records - the Importance of Historical Background."  Marian noted that:

*  Some questions take years to answer  You won't find everything at once. 
*  You need historical background to solve many problems
*  Question your sources.

Her case study to illustrate her points was trying to find out who wrote the Morton Allan Directory of European Steamship Arrivals, from 1890 to 1930, punlished by the Immigrant Information Bureau.  It wasn't a person named Morton Allan!  She noted that, after the 1906 Naturalization Act, the government required the immigrant to provide the port, date of entry and ship name to become a naturalized citizen.  Consequently, it became a challenge for some to remember those details many years later, and a little business sprang up near some ports.  Eventually, the Directory was created by somebody.  Significant fraud occurred, especially with ticket agents who used the book.  Marian eventually found that a former Ellis Island worker, who had worked for Cunard later, wrote the directory and a relative name Lilly Goldman published the Directory.  In the 1930 U.S. Census, Lilly Goldman had sons Allan and Morton, hence the name of the Directory. Marian noted that records tell an ancestors story, but the source also has a story.

After the Keynote, Jordan Jones, Shirley Wilcox and Melinde Byrne gave short retrospectives on the lives and accomplishments of John Humphries and George Russell, two NGS leaders who died in the past year.  This was nice. Then the winners of the 7-night stay in Salt Lake City was announced (Heather from Seattle), and the winner of the 2014 NGS Conference Registration in Richmond was announced (Terri O'Connell, one of our geneablogger colleagues).  A loud cheer came up from our little area of the hall.

As a finale, a local mariachi group from a Las Vegas area school played several songs in front of the assembly, then led us out to the entrance of the Exhibit Hall, played a few more songs, and the Exhibit Hall opened about 5 minutes early at 9:25 a.m.

I rushed into the Exhibit Hall looking for the Blogger/Press area, and finally found it opposite Leland Meitzler's Family Roots Publishing display (turn hard right at the entrance to the Exhibit Hall).  I put my stuff down, and hooked up the laptop to the Ethernet cable (yay!!).  I wandered every aisle of the Exhibit Hall - my sense is that it's about two-thirds the size of the RootsTech 2013 hall with maybe half of the vendors.  

I went off with Paul Hawthorne for the SDGS and CGSSD pictures at 10 a.m. at the registration area.  Then it was back to the Exhibit Hall to read blogs on the laptop and gab with the other bloggers (Valerie, Terri, Jen, Leland, Emily).  

I went off at 10:40 a.m. to be sure I had a seat at the first presentation session.  I went to Judy G. Russell's talk on "The Treasure Trove in Legislative Petitions."  Judy showed many examples of interesting and humorous petitions from Federal and State records during this talk, often reading paragraphs of interest from them.  For many of the examples, she described what could be learned from them about the people involved, the historical setting, and the issue at hand.  Two of the most interesting petitions were from Andrew Jackson in the early 1800s protesting his still tax, and Mary Todd Lincoln asking for a pension in 1869.

Judy described some of the record collections/group in the Natinoal Archives, Library of congress and State Archives, noting that much of the material is not digitized or indexed.  Some genealogical societies have indexed archival collections that might be found on PERSI.  Some published records may be found  in online book collections.   She noted that illiteracy did not stop petitions, that researchers should search for issues and not surnames in finding aids, to use newspapers to determine issues of the day, and to look for women using topics like temperance, suffrage and schools.

Judy is an excellent speaker (but I knew that from the webinars I've seen), and has a wealth of knowledge on her subject.  If you have a chance to see this talk, I highly recommend it.

After Judy's talk, I headed off to lunch at the SuperBook Deli and ate my cheeseburger watching four baseball games, a soccer game, three horse races and a dog race.

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver